Frequently Asked Questions for Instructors

Posted: Mar 25, 2020 3:13 PM   |  Updated: Mar 26, 2020 1:20 PM

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How can I get help teaching online and making the transition? 

The Teaching Services website should be your first stop in finding resources to support you as you do this work. It has been modified to ensure resources and the latest information is front and centre on the site. 

Teaching Services and the equivalent area in Department of Corporate, International and Continuing Education (Instructional Design and Online Learning) teams are providing instructors with support for online delivery on an ongoing basis. 

An educational technology site in Microsoft Teams has also been created for instructors. This site allows for collaboration and sharing of ideas and resources. We encourage everyone to help their colleagues through this transition. Please share best practices, resources and learnings with others as you go, and answer questions where possible.  

Will my students be able to complete their courses and graduate?  

Our intention is for students to complete their courses, including final assessments, in line with the current academic calendar or potentially sooner where possible.  

To ensure this happens, your immediate approach should be to assess what’s left to teach in your courses and prioritize what will be sufficient for students to complete the course with an adequate grasp of the learning outcomes. Determine whether enough learning has occurred for you to be able to assess for a final grade. 

We recognize there may be some instances where it will take longer than originally scheduled to complete course work. Please advise your school leaders if you identify these instances. 

How will students know how to proceed in my class? 

Instructors are responsible for communicating the approach they have decided on and what will be expected of students. We recommend you communicate via email or Moodle as soon as possible to let them know you are planning and will share more when you can.  

Be patient with your students, recognizing online learning will be new to many of them. Learning Services will be posting resources and opportunities for support for students through their site. Student are encouraged to check back regularly for new resources. 

UPDATED: Do I need to be on campus?  

Unless your job requires you to be on campus, and you have permission from your supervisor, staff should be working from home where possible. Further, to support NAIT's efforts to help "flatten the curve", many campuses, buildings, and wings are now closed and others have restricted access.

Leaders and staff are asked to use NAIT's guide to working from home during COVID-19 to support work-from-home arrangements. The guide outlines technical support, equipment and safety considerations.  

Will exams continue? 

Our intention is for students to complete their courses, including final assessments, in line with the current academic calendar or potentially sooner where possible. We will look wherever possible to alternative assessment strategies, including online exams or assignments in lieu of final examinations. 

How are apprenticeship programs impacted?

NAIT is committed to helping apprentices with options to complete their training during the challenging times of the COVID-19 pandemic. More details on the decisions made on cancellations, distance delivery, exams and the attendance policy can be found in NAIT's COVID-19 Update #9.

UPDATED - What do I do if a student contacts me to pick up personal belongings?

With the exception of students who need to access the Computer Commons in CAT, students should not be on campus. They were asked to remove their personal belongings by March 20. 

If they did not do so, and they have belongings that are essential, they need to make an appointment be emailing

Instructional staff are asked to help coordinate the retrieval of essential student belongings from labs and shops. Students should contact you by email first to identify what they need and from where. If you can reasonably verify that they are the property owner, please coordinate with the student and Protective Services.

What mental health supports are available for students?

Student Counselling remains open for student appointments via phone and videoconference. If you believe a student could benefit from a conversation with a counsellor, please refer them to to request an appointment through our contact form. Counselling staff monitors email from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays.

If you believe a student is in crisis, please refer them to:

  • The Distress Line: 780.482.HELP (4357)
  • Kids Help Phone: live chat online, text 686868 or call 1.800.668.6868
  • myWellness for strategies and 24/7 access to video counselling in over 30 languages
  • Access 24/7: 780.424.2424 or walk-in at the Royal Alexandra Hospital

If you believe there is an immediate risk of harm, they should call 911 or go to their nearest emergency room.

What will happen to students’ financial aid as classes transition online?

NAIT’s Student Awards and Financial Aid office wants to ensure students are aware of any financial aid updates during the COVID-19 pandemic. They have answers to frequently asked financial aid questions in COVID-19 information for students.

How will students be graded?

We have informed all credit students that we are changing the grading system for the Winter 2020 term to an honours/pass/fail (H/P/F) system, instead of percentage grades. We believe this new grading system will help our students progress, while ensuring equity and preservation of academic integrity during these exceptional circumstances. You can read more about the changes on the microsite.